Tuesday, 28 November 2006

Goal-line technology to be tested in Serie A

The Italian Football Federation (FIGC) have confirmed that goal-line camera technology will be experimented during Sunday's Serie A clash between Udinese and Reggina at the Stadio Friuli.

The innovative practice is based on four high-resolution cameras installed roughly 20 metres above each corner flag. Those cameras will be linked up to a central computer system which can then flick through 200 frames of images per second. These will be analysed by the system which will then determine if the ball has crossed the line. The referee can then refer to the technology if he and his assistants are in doubt.

“It’s an automatic system that doesn’t depend on the human eye and is more accurate than putting a microchip inside a ball,” said the director of the project Arcangelo Distante, referring to the ‘smartball’ option.

“Everything will be up and running on Sunday. We will provide the same system for the Under-20 World Championships in Canada and the Under-17 tournament in South Korea next year,” he added.

FIFA, the world's governing body, was considering a "smartball'' in which a microchip is embedded in the ball, sending a signal to the referee whenever the ball crosses the line. The technology was tested at the Under-17 World Championships in Peru last year but the trial proved not to be successful.

FIFA President Sepp Blatter stated this week that he expected to have goal-line technology in place by next year’s World Club Championship in Tokyo. “I am sure that at the end of 2007 we will have some sort of goal-line aid,” he conceded. “But we will not have video technology and stop the game. We have to keep the human factor and that includes refereeing error.”

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